At halftime of the Lakers and Bulls Christmas day game, the commentators speculated on whether the Lakers can compete as they are or whether they should keep pushing to trade for Dwight Howard. Magic Johnson said unequivocally that the Lakers cannot win a championship with their current team and should continue working on a trade offer with Andrew Bynum as the centerpiece. Chris Broussard went even further, arguing that the Lakers should trade Bynum and Pau Gasol, which seems to be what the Magic want.
This was music to my ears. The Lakers have some interesting new role players this year (good rebounders Troy Murphy and Josh McRoberts, sharpshooting rookie Andrew Goudelock). Even if they have to trade one or two of these guys and a stocking full of draft picks, it’s a great time to follow my South Beach Talents model by pairing top 15 superstars. I no longer put Gasol in the top 15, at least not with the specter of Kobe staring down ready to criticize every mistake.
With Brook Lopez out, the Nets missed their shot. The Lakers should do EVERYTHING POSSIBLE to get Dwight Howard. If they do, they will immediately become strong contenders for at least one more NBA championship. What more could they want under their Christmas tree?